Ratanakkiri provincial governor Thong Savon has called on residents not to believe in superstition and instead seek treatment at health centres if they believe they have contracted dengue fever.
The province recorded 460 dengue fever cases last year and one person died after failing to receive treatment in time.
“Ratanakkiri province abounds with ethnic minorities who still believe in superstitions. It makes it difficult for us to change their mindsets and attitudes towards health services,” he said.
The governor said people died from the outbreak because they were making offerings to spirits instead of getting healthcare.
The environment in some villages and communes, he said, is still a factor in causing outbreaks and they need to be cleaned up.
“Dengue fever happens in the same villages and communes. We try to educate them that it is a public health problem,” he said.
Provincial health department director Ung Ratana said the provincial administration has taken measures to distribute the anti-dengue larvicide Abate and ordered local authorities to spray against mosquitoes in all areas that recorded the fever.
“There have been eight dengue cases in the first six months of the year. We instructed those infected to get treatment and there is no danger. This dengue fever outbreak lasts from April to November or December,” he said.
Dengue fever cases in the province spiked from 10 in 2018 to 460 last year.